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Wondering how to hire an Accountant and looking for Accountant recruitment tips?
You’ve come to the right place, our complete Accounting recruiting guide has a step-by-step process on finance recruitment and how to best find the perfect Accountant for your business.
In our complete guide, we've compiled our industry expert finance recruitment advice, guiding you through the whole process of hiring Accountants.
From deciding the type of Accountant that is best to hire for your business needs, the top questions to ask when hiring an Accountant, right through to the onboarding process.
Find out more about how we can help add exceptional banking and finance candidates to your business and our Accountant recruitments services:
Wondering how to hire an Accountant for your business? Follow our step-by-step guide…
1. Establish the seniority level to hire, if you need to hire a team or a one-off hire and the type of Accountant to hire for your business
The first and one of the most important steps in your Accountant hiring process, is to establish what level vacancy you need to recruit for, the number of roles to hire for and what type of Accountant is needed for your business.
Here are some good questions to discuss with your HR and internal hiring teams when establishing what Accountant(s) to hire:
Once you’ve discussed this with your HR and hiring teams, only then can you clearly see the level you need to hire for and how many hires to make.
Types of Accountants to hire
If you’re wondering what are the types of Accountant to hire, and what to call your vacancy, here’s a breakdown of the main types Accountants:
As the name suggests, Project Accountants are typically hired to work on specific projects. They can be brought in on a long-term employee or a contractor brought in specifically to manage one specific project.
Project Accountants oversee anything from preparing invoices, approving expenses, planning and maintaining projects budgets and helping ensure that projects are completed by deadlines.
Financial Accountants are the most common and typical type of Accountants, responsible for keeping track of a company’s financial transitions.
They focus on the book-keeping side of accountancy, from tracking the company’s financial position, monitoring the company’s share value and make statements of stockholders’ equity.
Similar to Financial Accountants, Management Accountants track the company’s financial position but differ by providing reports to be used internally.
Management Accountants provide the financial information that managers need to make informed business decisions.
At higher levels, Management Accountants can make business recommendations or even be part of a company’s senior management team.
If you’re hiring an Accountant to do your taxes, a Tax Accountant is the best type. Tax Accountants deal with an organisation’s tax liabilities, track all the transactions that affects how much tax a company pays and calculate how much tax is due.
These Accountants will also try to find ways to reduce the tax your business pays and complete all the HMRC forms to ensure the correct amount is paid.
If you need an Accountant to detect fraud and embezzlement, you should hire a Forensic Accountant.
These types of Accountants analyse financial evidence and accounting techniques to detect fraud and suspicious activity.
As part of our complete Banking and Finance Recruitment services, we'll work closely with you to design a hiring plan that suits your businesses' unique goals. Helping you decide on the type of finance role to hire for and the number of vacanices to recruit for, to work towards your short-term and long-term business goals.
2. Know what makes a good Accountant - what to look for in an Accountant
A crucial step when hiring an Accountant for your business is knowing what makes a good Accountant and the key qualities to look for in potential candidates.
Whilst the skills and qualities will vary slightly depending on the level you’re hiring for and the type of Accountant, there are some essential skills required for all Accountancy roles.
We’ve compiled the key skills and qualities of an Accountant along with what to be vary of when hiring:
It’s important to ensure potential candidates have the necessary accounting qualifications for the role. Make sure that you’re aware of what qualifications to look for before you hire an Accountant.
The AAT qualification is typically the minimum level expected of an Accountant, but if you’re looking to hire a chartered Accountant, candidates must hold ACCA, ACA or CIMA qualifications.
The smallest error in figures can skew the accuracy of data, so it’s crucial that candidates give attention to detail to even the smallest of detail to ensure accuracy and minimal mistakes.
You want to look for candidates who are highly analytical who have due diligence for accuracy.
When hiring Accountants, it’s important not only focus on the technical and analytical skills, but also prioritise soft skills.
Accountants will not only deal with numbers, but clients as well, so it’s essential they have strong communication skills and the ability to build great relationships with clients and colleagues.
Look for candidates who easily build rapport in the interview and have experience building strong relationships.
Accountants will often have multiple projects to balance at one time and have to keep the figures, financial data and paperwork in check to often tight deadlines.
It’s important to look for candidates who know how to prioritise tasks and possess excellent time-management and project-management abilities.
Creativity may be a skill you don’t heavily associate with Accountants, however Accountants will often need to think outside the box and produce new ideas to overcome unique client issues. Look for candidates who are ready to offer fresh new solutions and aren’t afraid to try new techniques.
At Give A Grad A Go, we screen all our candidates at least twice, meaning not only will we see if they hold the right qualifications for your role, but also if they possess the right skills and personality to perfectly match your company.
This is just one of the many ways we can add exceptional banking and finance candidates to your business, visit our blog for more of the ways we can help you find talent.
3. Important factors to consider when hiring an Accountant
If you’re hiring for a more experienced Accountant role, you will need the candidate to have a good deal of experience with accountancy software.
Many Accountants have their own preferred software that their used to. This can be a problem if your company uses a different software, with sharing data being time-consuming and can cause errors.
It’s best to try to find an Accountant who’s using the same software as you, or is willing to use the same. Or, a good solution is to use a collaborative, cloud-based software with encryption built in so you don’t have to worry about the risks of data exchanging.
If you’re looking to hire talented Accountants, it’s vital you list more than just the salary on your job description.
Our 2019 Graduate Employment Statistics revealed that graduates listed salary third when ranking ‘what is most important in a job?’, with growth opportunities and development ranking higher in importance.
Show candidates how you can add value to their career, show they can grow with your company and have a great work-life balance at your company compared to another Accountancy position.
When hiring an accountant, it’s important to remember to take into consideration diversity and inclusion in the workplace. A diverse workforce has significant benefits to your company and your employees.
For more information, visit our blog on what is diversity in the workplace and download our Diversity and Inclusion 2020 report to see how Give A Grad A Go stand in terms of candidate diversity.
3. Write an engaging Accountant job description
Key to attracting the right candidates to your role and company is writing an engaging and accurate Accountant job description.
You want to excite the candidate about your opportunity whilst also allowing a candidate to determine if they have the required skillset to carry out the day-to-day tasks and responsibilities of the role.
Here’s our 5 key sections of an Accountant job description:
This is your opportunity to show off! Demonstrate why a candidate would want to be a part of your company. Include any other vital or exciting information; try to paint a clear picture of who you are. Consider these points:
This section should be a brief summary of the role. Be clear about which type of Accountant you are looking to hire. List examples of the accountancy software you require and any previous experience.
Using lots of keywords throughout will not only be useful for potential candidates to understand the role, but key phrases and terms are also good for SEO, ensuring the job description is visible online and seen by as many great candidates as possible. Is this a full time position? Or a paid placement? Is it a remote working role? Will there be shift work?
Here you can provide a bit more detail about what they can expect be doing.
Give a breakdown about the day-to-day tasks of the job and use bullet points to outline the main responsibilities of the role.
Try and be as transparent as possible and include the following information:
This is where you list what applicants will need to be considered for this role, helping to streamline your search.
It's important to be specific about what is required of the candidate, whilst also being open minded at the same time.
As well as candidates needing to understand what the job entails when they apply, they also need to be confident that they are the right individual for the role.
This is the juicy bit and gives you the chance to paint a cohesive and positive image of the role.
Whilst it can be tempting to oversell your role, it is important to be honest from the early stages as this will help you discover who will be the best person to get the job done.
This section can be bullet points to outline advantages and perks of working at the company. Key areas to think about include:
Graduates are 24 times more likely to apply to our client's EdTech roles than others, 11 times more likely for our client's Legal roles, and on average, 2.7 times more likely to apply to job specs Witten by our team across all major sectors.
At Give A Grad A Go we use our years of experience in the recruitment sector and insightful marketing knowledge to make sure our client’s jobs are seen, and within 48 hours they will receive a shortlist of perfectly-matched candidates to their roles.
4. Use a top Banking and Finance recruitment agency
Whether you’re hiring an Accountant for a small business or you’re a large global company, as one of the UK’s leading Finance hiring agencies with over 10+ years’ experience, we can help find exceptional Accounting candidates for your business.
Here are some of our expert finance recruitment techniques and reasons why you should use a recruitment agency:
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At Give A Grad A Go we know every business is different with its own unique ways of working and goals. From the outset you will be assigned an Account Manager who will be an expert in the Finance industry.
They will meet with you regularly to get to know the in depth needs of your business, which of our services will be the best fit and the exact type of candidate/s you are looking for.
If you're a start-up looking to make your first hire, you might be interested in our 'temp-to-perm' hiring solutions whereby candidates have a short 1-6 month trial period.
Working with recruitment agencies saves time and allows you to focus on other areas of your business, by taking away the hassle of screening CVs, conducting telephone interviews, and communicating with candidates.
At Give A Grad A Go, our average time to fill a job role is 23 working days (almost half of the industry average).
At Give A Grad A Go, we have a plethora of talented graduates ready to go, with 84% of candidates we work with achieving a 1st, a 2.1 or a Masters degree at University.
With a database of over 300,000 we match the perfect graduates to a range of job roles every day, no matter how niche or specific the role is.
Find out more about our recruitment benefits and the many ways we can efficiently hire perfectly matched finance candidates for your business:
5. Interview stages – ask the right Accountant interview questions
The interview stage is a fantastic way to find out which candidates are a great match for your role and company.
Whilst some candidates may have years of relevant finance experience, they may lack the right skills and personality to suit your company.
It’s crucial you ask targeted and thought-provoking questions which will help reveal a candidates personality and motivations for applying to your role. We’ve put together some top Finance interview questions to ask candidates:
The best Accountants are those who are proactive and go above their required day-to-day tasks to save your business money.
This is a great question to ask to see how candidates think on their feet and the steps they’d take to be able to answer this question.
With the Finance industry is constantly changing, this is a great question to ask to see if a candidate keeps up-to-date with industry news and to see if they have any insightful predictions for the future and what evidence they bring into their answers.
This is a useful question to ask candidates to see what their understanding of the role is.
Look for responses that mention any of the key skills you have included on your job description and for candidates who bring in examples of where they’ve previously demonstrated these skills in their answers.
Errors often happen in the world of finance, so this question will give you an insight into how candidates react to difficult situations and the actions they take to managing the problem.
This question is great to see if candidates have great attention to detail and accuracy. Great answers will mention a thorough process check for bookkeeping errors or mention any previous techniques where they have checked quality control in the data entry process.
With more companies allowing employees to work remotely, this is a great question to judge if a candidate has the qualities to work efficiently from home and if this is something that they would want to do if your business requires it.
Look for answers that suggest a candidate is a self-starter can work independently and have strong communication skills to stay connected online.
If you’re looking to recruit remotely, visit our blog for the many ways we can help you with remote hiring.
If you’re a start-up business and have never conducted an interview before and are looking for top interviewing techniques check out our blog on how to interview someone for a job, or for more great interview questions to ask, visit our employer interview questions to ask candidates.
6. Have a well-planned Accountant onboarding process
The final stage of your accountancy recruitment, is the onboarding process.
This is the training and introductory period for your new hires and is a key time to ensure your new finance hires are comfortable with their work, know what is required from them and can settle into your company.
We’ve put together a few onboarding practices to follow for your new Accounting hires:
Our first tip is not to leave the onboarding planning and process until after you have hired the Developer. Employee onboarding shouldn't be an afterthought or you could lose the best starters before you've managed to settle them into the company.
To save yourself the time and money later on, dedicate the time to creating a solid onboarding plan when you invest in hiring a new Accountant.
Our top tip for excellent finance staff development is to offer support to your new hires from the beginning.
There is likely to be a lot of new systems and processes for your finance employee to adjust to, a great way for your new starter to quickly learn how these work, is to assign them a mentor.
For tips on how to implement a mentoring scheme at your company, visit our blog on the benefits of a workplace mentoring program for employers.
This will also benefit the mentor themselves, as they will be able to include this into their career progression plan, giving them a sense of further responsibility and proving their worth and value to your company.
In order to get a high return of investment from your new finance employees, it’s important that they know what is expected from them in their role from the beginning.
Make sure your new hires are aware of their weekly and monthly targets and the standard of work that is expected of them.
Explaining this to your new starters straight away gives them targets to work towards and a solid understanding of what they should be achieving.
It’s important to implement evaluation measures throughout your finance new starters onboarding process to track their progress and highlight areas where they may need more training.
Implementing a thorough Accounting recruitment process is key to hiring for the right role at your company, finding a perfectly matched candidate and allowing your business to grow and develop as much as possible from your new hires.
As the UK's leading specialist graduate recruitment agency, our services helps companies employ staff as quickly as they need to grow and succeed. You will receive a shortlist of vetted candidates usually within 48 hours; you can trust us to find talent, whatever your deadline.
With no upfront costs involved and only having to pay a fee once we have found the candidate you’ve been looking for, our graduate recruitment services are the most cost-effective you will find.
If you’re looking for an accountancy recruitment agency in London, get in touch to find out more about our award-winning recruitment services and how we can find talented Accountants for your business: